Bougainville News: Plans well underway for 2015 elections in Bougainville



The election of the third House which will commence with the issue of writs in the coming months will see Bougainville leaders vying for the 40 seats in the Bougainville House of Representatives, including that of the president, three women seats and seats for former combatants representing the three regions and 33 constituency seats.

This election is very crucial to Bougainvillean as it marks the start of the referendum period which, under the conditions of the Bougainville Peace Agreement, is to be held between 2015 and 2020.


THE Acting Electoral Commissioner for Bougainville, George Manu (pictured above), has recently announced the appointment of returning officers and assistant returning officers for this year’s ABG General Election.

This election is very crucial to Bougainvillean as it marks the start of the referendum period which, under the conditions of the Bougainville Peace Agreement, is to be held between 2015 and 2020.

Leaders elected will play a crucial role in addressing outstanding issues like weapons disposal, economic recovery and good governance which are needed to be met before the set referendum date.

The appointed officials include Regional Returning Officer John Itanu who will be responsible for the presidential seat, Peter Wanga (Northern regional seats for women and former combatants), Charles Kopana (Central regional seats for women and former combatants) and Sam Roroga who will be responsible for the southern regional seats for women and former combatants.

The Assistant Returning Officers for each constituency include Francis Tommy (Peit, Tonsu and Tsitalato), Garry Kenehe (Haku, Halia and Hagogohe), Peter Kutadio (Taonita/Teop, TaonitaTinputz), Henry Taul (Nissan), Samuel Aririan(Teua, Mahari), Peter Tokin (Atolls), Robert Toromet (Suir, Selau), Collin Darei (South Nasioi, Kongara and Kokoda), Denise Palipal (North Nasioi, Eivo-Torau and Ioro), Sylvester Semoso (Rau, Terra), Mathew Maau (Baubake, Makis), Moses Koiri (Lule, Konnou), Martin Tumuki (Kopii, Ramu, MotunaHuyonoTokunutui), Justin Teneke (Baba, Lato, Bolave) and Leo Gobekatsu (Torokina).

The dates for the issue of writs, polling, counting and return of writs have already been set but the announcement will be made by ABG Speaker Andrew Miriki.



The Bougainville Electoral Commission is urged to do more to update and increase the present total number of registered eligible voters throughout Bougainville in preparation for the 2015 ABG General Election.

This urgent call is made by the leaders of Central Bougainville, particularly those from Panguna District where according to the figures held at the electoral commission, the total number of registered voters in the Ioro constituency alarmingly appears to be 1, 827 at the moment.

In a released statement today, the leaders insisted that this is simply not possible while Evo/Torau and Konnou constituencies have 5, 090 and 7, 407 registered voters respectively.

They revealed that during the last PNG General Election in 2012, it was reported in the common roll that the number of registered voters for Ioro constituency was around 7, 000.

The leaders are therefore seriously asking as to where the rest of the 6, 000 registered voters from the last common roll update during the PNG General election went to.

According to the recent figures obtained from the Bougainville Electoral Commission last Thursday, the total number of eligible voters in Bougainville is surprisingly as follows, Central Bougainville 28, 754 voters, South Bougainville 52, 219 voters and North Bougainville 62, 530 which totals up to 143, 503 voters.

This according to Sam Kaouna, Martin Miriori and Father Simon Mumarinu is not even half of the total population of Bougainville which is 300, 000.

The leaders demand that special efforts be made by the electoral commission to update the figure for Central Bougainville saying this figure is unrealistic, especially after considering the fact that all of the faction of the Mekamui are known to have recently registered their names to participate in the coming election.

They said this is vital especially in preparation for the referendum and if this is not done, the people will be deprived and robbed off their democratic rights to choose the leaders who will represent them in parliament in the next five years.



THE Bougainville Electoral Commission will still be paying service providers that have yet to be given their dues for services rendered during the 2010 ABG General Election and the 2013 ABG bye-elections.

The Acting Bougainville Electoral Commissioner, George Manu said he has already made a request to the Autonomous Bougainville Government to release funding to pay off these outstanding bills.

He said he is constantly negotiating with the government to give him this money before we go into the election. When questioned on the outstanding for the 2012 National General Election, the Acting Commissioner distanced his office saying it is the responsibility of the PNG Electoral Commission (PNGEC) to secure funding and settle the dues.

Mr Manu however said he has been constantly contacting the PNG Electoral Commissioner Andrew Trawen to settle these dues.

He added that as a concerned Bougainvillean, he has been discussing with the PNG Electoral Commissioner to settle these outstanding before the election.

During their meeting last week, Mr. Trawen informed Mr. Manu that the National Electoral Commission is waiting for the opening of the government accounts in March this year. And according to Mr. Trawen, once they access the accounts, they will pay off the outstanding.



The acting ABG Political Party Registrar Joseph Kaipu is urging all political parties to start registering with his office.

He made this announcement last week, thus encouraging all political parties to go to his office so he can assist them to fill in their application and finalizing their registrations before they can be able to participate in the upcoming 2015 ABG General Election.

He stressed that he does not want to do any last minute registrations because late registrations sometimes might not be in line with the ABG Political Parties (Registration) Act 2006.

That is why according to Mr. Kaipu it is very important for all political parties to start collecting the application forms from his office during this month because he does not want to rush up the registration process in the last minute.

The acting ABG political party registrar revealed that only one political party, the New Bougainville Party which is headed by the ABG President chief Dr. John Momis has collected the application forms from his office.

He added that he is only waiting for the party’s public officer to submit their application for consideration before he can register the party.

Mr. Kaipu said registration will close towards the end of March on the date scheduled for the issue of writs.


One comment on “Bougainville News: Plans well underway for 2015 elections in Bougainville

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